Green Tea Antioxidants

Green tea antioxidants benefit the body in many ways. If you are seeking to prevent or slow the progression of age related macular degeneration it is important to incorporate beverages and foods high in antioxidants into your daily diet.

"Almost every single one of the risk factors we have for macular degeneration can be linked to free radicals."

Dr. Lylas G. Mogk, M. D.

Many of the risk factors that contribute to the development of macular degeneration can be tied to free radicals and the damage they cause.

Free radicals are unstable electrons that cause damage to our cells and especially to the macula where there is a lot of oxidation. Antioxidants disable these damaging free radicals.

Green Tea Antioxidant Levels

Besides eating your antioxidants, think about getting them from what you drink. Green tea is well known as an antioxidant drink.

However, the antioxidant content and flavor of the tea is dependent on several factors:

1) If the leaves are from the first or second harvest

2) The variety of the plant

3) The growing conditions

4) When it was harvested

5) How it is processed

6) How it is stored

7) How it is brewed

Possibly because it is less processed,the green tea antioxidant level is higher than black tea.

Best Green Teas

What is the best tea to buy to benefit from green tea antioxidants and is there any difference in the variety of brands? Here are some things to consider.

1) Choose loose tea leaves

The tea leaves need room to expand. Tea bags or tea balls can affect the flavor of the tea. Let the tea leaves sit loosely in the water and steep for a few minutes, and then strain.

2) Freshness

3. Certified Organic

The longer it is stored the less flavorful the tea.

Buy your tea leaves from a local tea shop or a reputable on line company.

I prefer to get organic green tea and have been happy with the Prince of Peace brand. They are not loose leaves, but rather in tea bags so I bring them to work or when I travel. Prince of Peace box of 100 is the best value. Get yours at Amazon here:

Prince of Peace Tea, Green, 100-Count (Pack of 3)

Brewing Green Tea

Actually, there are several things you should know about brewing this tea to get the most flavor and benefits.

1) Brew tea at a lower temperature - around 140°F - 185°F. Do not use boiling water. You can boil your water first and then let it sit for a few minutes before you use it.

2) Let it steep for 1-3 minutes. The longer it steeps the more bitter it will taste. Also, the lower the water temperature, the longer it needs to be steeped.

3) Green tea leaves can be reused up to 3 times (but don't let them sit overnight and reuse them)

4. Steep two tea bags in a cup of hot water to double the benefits

5. Add a slice of lemon and ginger for their taste and anti-inflammatory properties

6. Squeeze the tea bag to maximize the amount of the polyphenols from the tea leaves

Green Tea Antioxidants - Polyphenols

All teas from the camellia tea plant are rich source of polyphenols - which are a type of antioxidant.

"The antioxidant properties of polyphenols have been widely studied, but it has become clear that the mechanisms of action of polyphenols go beyond the modulation of oxidative stress."

"Current evidence strongly supports a contribution of polyphenols to the prevention of

cardiovascular diseases,

cancers, and

osteoporosis and

suggests a role in the prevention of

neurodegenerative diseases and

diabetes mellitus."

American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 81, No. 1, 215S-217S, January 2005 © 2005 American Society for Clinical Nutrition

There are no calories in this tea.

Green Tea and Caffeine

Yes, there is caffeine in this tea unless you buy caffeine free green tea. How much caffeine? It depends on several things:

1) How long you let the leaves brew

2) The number of times you use the green leaves - the first brew will have the most caffeine, and then subsequent uses will have less

3) Amount of tea leaves used

4) What part of the plant was used - the teas made from the bud and the two closest leaves are higher in caffeine

Green tea does have less caffeine than coffee.

Green tea: 20 to 60 mg. of caffeine in around 8 oz of tea,

Coffee: 60 - 100 mg. in 8 oz of coffee.

It has taken me a while to substitute green tea for my morning java, but now that I've made the switch I now look forward to my morning cup of tea.

If you are sensitive to caffeine don't drink this tea in the evening or buy Organic, Caffeine Free Green Tea

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